Hi Alison, how are you?
Great, thanks! It’s been a busy few weeks getting back into the swing of things for 2016!
Welcome to DuckFeatures; we’ve never featured a gold and silversmith before. Tell us a bit about what you do.
I’m a gold and silversmith designing and hand making both jewellery and tableware pieces.
The jewellery side to my practice is centered around an ongoing collection of pieces focused on elegance, simplicity, geometry and a paired back style. Each piece is hand made in sterling silver with the addition of gold and oxidized surface finishes.
My tableware collection has evolved from my traditional training in age-old Silversmithing techniques. Handmade in stainless steel and copper, the collection includes spoons, bowls, cheese knives, butter knives and copper planters.
I also make one-off exhibition pieces that are more involved and explorative in both technique and concepts. Late last year I had my first solo exhibition of 48 tableware pieces!
How did you get into jewellery making, and what training is involved?
I first dabbled in jewellery making back in high school in an after school class; I loved it and stuck with it all through high school.
I decided that this was what I loved and went on to study Gold and Silversmithing at the ANU School of Art in Canberra. I studied for four and half years, including a six-month exchange to Germany. After graduating I started up my own workshop space, Pocket Studio.
I think I’m drawn to your work’s minimal, textural aesthetic; what influences your designs?
My work has a simple pared back aesthetic that mixes age-old techniques with a contemporary design aesthetic. I love the tradition of Silversmithing and the process of working the metal by hand. I try to keep evidence of this process throughout my work. I’m drawn to the simplicity of old utilitarian objects and I think this influences my approach to design and making.
What do you love about what you do?
First and foremost I love making. Whether I’m tinkering in the workshop experimenting with new designs, or making my products for orders, it is the hands on process that I really enjoy.
Being self-employed and developing my brand, seeing it grow and evolve is also very rewarding.
How do you think that design can influence our lives? How important is good design?
Good design can be very inspiring. I think good design can almost seamlessly entwine with your life, subtly enhancing your every day experiences.
As a maker, being surrounded by good design encourages you to push yourself and your ideas further. It’s an exciting time for design at the moment, there seems to be a greater appreciation for original design and a renewed interest for the handmade.
Thanks for your time Alison. We look forward to seeing more of your beautifully crafted pieces in time to come.
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